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Trying to figure out my strange group of symptoms and if all are TMS...

Trying to figure out my strange group of symptoms and if all are TMS...

by Willow E -
Number of replies: 2

I have a grouping of TMS symptoms that all started at once but are hard to understand. I have proceeded as if all of m problems are TMS but there is one symptom that I still have doubts about so I thought I would mention it here.

In December I changed my diet to a much healthier one, which involved taking away a lot of my favorite comfort foods. It was a reasonable diet with no extremes and it was much better than how I was eating before. After being on the diet for a week or so, I started to have some stomach problems, which has happened before when I’ve eliminated my comfort foods. It was a very healthy diet but it was as if my body was addicted to my comfort foods and didn’t want to give them up. Anyway, a few weeks later I was struck with EXCRUCIATING back pain that practically debilitated me and was 24/7. At the same time that I had the back pain, I also felt like I had NO core muscles and within a few weeks I also started to have ZERO bowel movements and my stomach muscles were totally slack. Nothing was found on any tests (went to several doctors including a GI doctor and also had MRI, xrays, ultrasound, etc) and when I started working on TMS, particularly after a couple of visits with a therapist at the Pain recovery Center, the pain was eventually reduced. It took a while but I have much less pain now. However, I still have a lack of core strength (which I didn’t have before the pain started in January) and an inability to bend over and distended/slack stomach muscles. I started to have bowel movements after I abandoned the diet and went back to my comfort foods.

I have heard from a few people that this still sounds like TMS. The part that confuses me is the distended stomach and lack of core muscles that make it seem like it is something structural. My mobility is still greatly reduced and I haven’t been able to find anything written about this in the TMS literature or forums. I don’t know if TMS can express this way. 

I wonder if I should see a Pilates instructor to build core strength or if that would be treating this like a structural problem and take away from my TMS recovery. The therapist thought that Pilates would be fine because I would not be trying to get rid of the pain that way but would be getting back to my normal activity level. 

I’m sorry it took me so long to be able to explain this. It’s all very confusing to me.

This weird bunch of symptoms that don’t coincide with things I have read about.



In reply to Willow E

Re: Trying to figure out my strange group of symptoms and if all are TMS...

by susan fields -

Hi Willow,

It sounds like you really didn't want to give up your comfort foods and you were subconsciously filled with rage--and it came out in your body. Over my lifetime I have had some of the strangest symptoms that were so severe it was difficult to imagine that they weren't due to an actual ailment--but so often they weren't. A while back I gave up drinking diet soda and had only water--and suddenly I became very constipated which led to other gastro problems--which resulted in worrying, more problems, worrying, more problems, etc. 

You might also consider that you didn't feel deserving of eating healthier--and you were punishing yourself. The number of tests that you had that were all negative would indicate to me that this might very well be TMS. I would journal to find out what in your subconscious was going on that lead to this reaction to wanting a healthier diet. 



In reply to Willow E

Re: Trying to figure out my strange group of symptoms and if all are TMS...

by Howard Schubiner -

Thanks for writing, Willow.

Susan's comments are very well appreciated on the psychological level!!

On a physical level, I don't see how the change in diet could possible lead to lack of core strength and slack stomach. I really think that this is TMS; pure and simple. The brain is powerful and certainly powerful enough to cause those symptoms.

Best, Howard